`More than one way to skin a pig,' says Moussaoui, who demands a hearing

Thursday, August 1st 2002, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

WASHINGTON (AP) _ Lashing out at the judge and the lawyers appointed to represent him, Zacarias Moussaoui said he is being set up for conviction as a Sept.11 conspirator by the very people duty-bound to protect his rights, according to court papers released Thursday.

``There is more than one way to skin a pig,'' Moussaoui wrote in demanding a court hearing to delve into the preparations his court-appointed attorneys have taken for his defense.

Calling his legal team a ``horde of blood suckers,'' Moussaoui said his lawyers had informed him this week that they didn't have the information he was seeking. Moussaoui insists on representing himself and the lawyers are on standby in the event the judge orders them to take over.

Earlier this week, defense attorney Frank Dunham advised the court that he was willing to provide Moussaoui a status report. Moussaoui goes on trial Sept. 30 in federal court in Alexandria, Va.

``Mr. Moussaoui, who heretofore wanted nothing from us, also asks generally for a status report on certain defense efforts'' and ``we will be providing him a detailed report shortly,'' Dunham wrote. ``He can then provide us further guidance, ask further questions, or request specific materials once he has that report.''

U.S. District Judge ``Leonie Brinkema is organizing a ... no contest fight,'' complained Moussaoui.

``Leonie Brinkema must convene a hearing'' about ``the state of non defense preparations ... At $150 per hour, Americans must be given a good show,'' said Moussaoui.

Moussaoui said Brinkema had mishandled the entire pretrial process to the detriment of the defendant's legal rights.

Moussaoui has filed over 100 motions, ranging from requests to testify before Congress to dismissing his court-appointed lawyers, who say the accused Sept. 11 conspirator is mentally ill.

Meanwhile, federal prosecutors in the case urged extra precautions to ensure that Moussaoui cannot communicate with terrorists or the news media if he is given computer access to a secure Internet site.

Prosecutors said the secure Internet site that is already set up for Moussaoui's standby lawyers should be copied onto a server or other computer at the jail where the defendant is being held and ``wired'' to his computer.

The prosecutors said such a step would prevent any unauthorized communications.

An alternative would be to simply establish a connection between Moussaoui's computer in jail and his lawyers' site at their offices. Such a step, said the prosecutors, would require the government to continually monitor Moussaoui to ensure that he didn't manipulate the connection to breach the computer security system.